Archives for posts with tag: workplace

The HON Product Development team has been busy this winter finishing up several new product launches. Be HON Ready in 2016 by familiarizing yourself with what’s new this month:

VOI®

HON Voi Desks

Voi desks offer a solution for every application of the workplace, including private offices, open plan workspaces, and more.  HON is excited to introduce new standing height storage and worksurface supports, as well as new Double Depth O-legs.

CONTAIN®

HON Contain Storage

The Contain family is growing! Towers and pedestals will now be available in addition to our credenzas. Contain is a streamlined collection of active storage that maximizes storage capacity while elevating the aesthetic of a workstation.

ABODE™

HON Abode Systems Desk

Integrating seamlessly into Accelerate® and Abound®, HON’s new Systems Desk, Abode, provides a durable kit of parts that can be configured free-standing or as part of a workstation.

WORKSTATION ACCESSORIES

HON Accesories

Provide customization of workstations next year with our two new LED tasklights and cable management troughs.  Not only can accessories enhance the visual appearance of a workplace, but they also provide wellness and technology support for employees.

Which of these 2016 HON updates are you most excited about?

Professional NetworkingNetworking is the act of making a meaningful connection with a member of your community, another professional in your industry or related field, or a coworker within your organization, including members inside and outside of your team.  Once a connection is made, you can build these relationships by making an effort to keep in touch, asking if someone needs help on a project, inviting another member to lunch, or by finding a common interest or passion to discuss.  Networking is not just about who you know, but who knows you.

Why is networking important?

“By getting out there, you make yourself known and not just another name on a sheet of paper,” says Brad Karsh, President of JobBound, in his article, What Does ‘Networking’ Really Mean?  The more you make yourself known, the more likely it is that your name will come up when hiring managers discuss future job opportunities. It’s also a great way to help you move up or around within your current organization.  If management does not know who you are, how will they know you are a great asset to the team?

How do I network?

The best way to start networking is to find something in common! This will open the door for a great conversation.

When networking within your own organization, find mentors both on and off your team.  For example, if you are part of the Marketing Department, it might be useful to find a mentor in Marketing as well as a mentor in the Finance Department.  Because of the many ways these two departments overlap and interact, understanding another function will help you become more efficient at your job. Try volunteering to be a part of a project outside of your regular scope of work, or reaching out to your manager to let them know that you are looking for additional opportunities on cross-functional teams.

Some of the ways we promote networking here at HON include “Lunch and Learn” collaborative meetings, Leadership Roundtable discussions and weekly touch base meetings with managers.  Keep an eye out for any opportunity you have to build a relationship with another member in your organization!

Professional NetworkingBest Practices

From my own experience, here are a few networking tips to remember:

  1. Practice with family, friends, or strangers you meet outside of work. (They don’t have to know you’re practicing your networking skills!).
  2. Ask the individual questions to show your interest in getting to know him or her.
  3. Always thank the individual for his or her time, in person or with a thank you note.
  4. Smile! Show that you are having a good time creating this new connection.

Additional networking tips from Andrew Vest’s article, How to Network The Right Way: Eight Tips include networking before you need it, trying not to dismiss anyone as unimportant, generously helping others prior to needing something from them – give more than you receive, and build genuine relationships!

Most importantly, remember that networking isn’t over once you start the initial conversation; continue to stay in touch with these new connections!

Gone are the days when office design was limited to only a few fabric or laminate color options. Today, office design trends are incorporating two-tone laminate combinations and mixed materials to help add a modern and fresh look to the workplace.  For example, one laminate color can be used on a worksurface while another laminate color is used on the storage, or one laminate color can be used on the casing of your storage while a different color adds dimension on the drawer fronts.  Integrating frosted glass, metal and other mixed materials into overhead storage and support legs of office furniture is another way to update your space.

HON offers 8 woodgrain laminates, including the recently introduced Mocha, Pinnacle, and Cognac.  Below are a few ways you can integrate these laminate colors and mixed materials into your workspace for a more modern aesthetic.

Mocha
Mocha provides a rich, sophisticated color that can provide a great contrast to a white laminate on a worksurface or storage.  Try adding frosted glass to the wall storage for a fun twist on the classic private office.

Lam 1

Pinnacle
Pinnacle is a modern laminate color that also pairs well with lighter worksurfaces and metal materials, allowing metal surfaces to “pop.

HON Pinnacle Laminate

Cognac
Cognac offers a refreshed look on the traditional cherry color palette that can help liven up a workspace, especially when paired with a lighter worksurface color option.

HON Cognac Laminate

How do you integrate two-tone laminates and mixed materials into your workplace?

Changing seasons this time of year typically bring to mind deep red, orange, yellow, and brown.  Those colors have been popular again this fall – but Pantone recommends that you look for creative ways to pair warm colors with bright summery tones. Here are 3 of our favorite examples of these color combinations for the end of Fall 2015:

Camel with Turquoise

Add a pop of turquoise to neutral tones

Camel provides such a blank canvas for coupling a bright color. If your office space follows the neutral trend, add a pop of turquoise with desk accessories to be right on target. Check out this palette on our “Office Design & Style Inspiration” board here.

Rustic Orange with Purple

Add a splash of bright purple to rustic orange

Orange comes to mind every fall in the form of pumpkin goodies. But pairing rusting orange with an unexpected purple hue creates a twist on a traditional fall palette. Check out this palette on our “Office Design & Style Inspiration” board here.

Sage Green with Peach

Spruce up sage green with a bright peach

Capture some of summer’s last floral colors with this sage green and peach combination. The peach keeps the look light and fun, while sage reminds that it’s the season of fall. Check out this palette on our “Office Design & Style Inspiration” board here.

This fall, don’t stop at traditional autumn colors. Mix it up with a bright pop. What are your favorite color trends for fall?

You can check out these color palettes and more office design inspiration on HON’s Pinterest page.

Fall

Summer is officially over and the fall season has arrived.  Fall is an exciting time here in Iowa, as the trees change colors and the weather starts to cool.  You don’t have to live in the Midwest to be able to appreciate the new season, though.  You can use the season change to regenerate energy into your workplace and finish the year strong.  Here are five fall-inspired ways you can show employee appreciation:

  1. Host an office tailgate – Encourage employees to wear a shirt or jersey representing their favorite football team and cater in typical tailgating food for lunch, such as hot dogs or BBQ.
  2. Plan a weekend family-friendly activity – Invite employees to a local park or farm for hay rides, corn mazes, face painting, pumpkin-picking and more!
  3. Provide a fall-themed breakfast – Motivate your employees on a Monday morning by surprising them with apple cider, pumpkin bread, or pumpkin spice muffins.
  4. Indulge in a Thanksgiving dinner at work – We spend a lot of time in the office, and our coworkers can become like family. What better way to celebrate with them this fall than with an office Thanksgiving dinner? Make it a pot luck and invite everyone to bring their favorite dish.
  5. Get competitive with a pumpkin carving contest – Take a break during a Friday lunch hour and let employees show off their creative side with a pumpkin carving contest.

What are some ways you plan to show appreciation for your employees or coworkers this season?

The weather is getting cooler, the leaves are changing colors, and it’s finally football season. So how can you carry the team spirit into your office? Here are 4 ways to be the MVP of your office!

  1. Do your job. Ok, seems obvious, right? A team is only as strong as the weakest link. Work hard and go above and beyond. Offer to help out a teammate struggling with their workload.
  1. Every team needs a cheerleader! Have a good attitude. Boost morale by maintaining a positive outlook. According to the October edition of Shape magazine, the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine found that employees experience a 39% boost in work motivation after focusing on what they like about their job. Mentally list a couple perks you love – or share them with your colleagues to keep the positivity going.
  1. Speaking of team morale….bring in coffee or treats for your team. I like to pick up a jug of coffee or bake muffins to share. Especially if you’ve been working long, hard hours – sugar and caffeine always do the trick.
  1. Set goals and stick to them. Long term goals keep you motivated through your daily workload. Be sure to set up smaller tasks that lead you to the big prize. Rome wasn’t built in a day – but part of Rome was built every day.

How can you be the MVP of your office? What things can you do to boost morale this fall?

Eight weeks ago I stepped onto a plane in Moline, Illinois and 3 hours later I stepped off in Baltimore, Maryland with no return ticket home. I had earned a promotion and was now a member of the field sales organization! This Mid-western girl packed all of her belongings and was off to become a big city, East Coast dweller. In the blink of an eye 8 weeks has passed, but I have learned some valuable lessons about how to be successful in a field sales role.

LESSON ONE: Always Be OVER Prepared

Create a checklist of items to review before walking into any customer meeting. This check list should be a standard one that can be used for any visit or meeting. For example, a few items on my checklist include:

  1.  Know my customer’s sales numbers: It is important to have answers to financial questions in the event your dealership inquires. Having information and insight on your dealer’s numbers can lead to more productive and efficient conversations.
  1. Always have a training deck ready: Even if you are not visiting a customer specifically for training, you never know when a training opportunity may arise. Have a couple of training decks pre-made and saved to your computer for easy access.
  1. Set a micro goal for the visit: I have found that, when I go to a customer meeting with a micro goal in mind, I am more productive. Your micro goal should complement your visit and could be as simple as discussing a potential project with a customer or building more rapport with a certain individual.

LESSON TWO: Build Your Network

Being in the field gives you many opportunities to meet and build rapport with any number of connections. Being cognizant of this, I do two things to keep my contacts organized.

  1. Use a Business Card Binder: You can find a business card binder, in which you can keep each and every business card you receive, at just about any office supply store. I have categorized my binder by customers, end users, and vendors so when I need to reach out to someone I know where to look. I keep this binder in my car for easy access.
  1. My Network Excel document: This is a document that I update almost every day, or at least every time I meet someone new. It is a simple Excel document and has only three columns – Name, Company, and Comments. I keep it as a working document on my computer desktop so that every time I meet someone new or have a meaningful conversation with one of my customers I can update it. I simply add the individual’s name, company information and any comments that remind me of meaningful details we discussed together, whether it be how many kids they have, where they vacationed last or a project that may be 6 months out. Before I see that customer again, I pull up the Excel document and prepare myself with talking points.

LESSON THREE: Car time is Call Time

One difficult hurdle I had to get over in my new role was determining how to get the most out of my time in my car. Often times, I found myself coming home around 5pm and working until 9pm to try to catch up on all of the emails coming in to my inbox while I was driving. This is when I decided that “car time is call time”. I now use my car time to resolve any issues that can be dealt with over the phone. Instead of waiting until I get home to email customers, set up appointments or answer questions my customers have sent me via email, I simply call the customer while I’m driving. This helps me eliminate some email time when I get home and also gives me an excuse to network with my customers and build more rapport.

These three lessons that I have learned from being in the field for 8 weeks has helped to make my work days more efficient and effective. I plan to abide by these three lessons and several more that I pick up along the way to help make me a successful field sales representative.

For those of you who also work in Sales, what tips have you learned along the way?

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